Rumor: Renren Jumping into the Own Brand Phone War?

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Guess what, couple days after the New York Times reported that Facebook might be working on a smartphone for a second try, Renren was rumored to dig its head into a proprietary mobile OS which built atop Android.

The Chinese Facebook has been working on the system for several months, currently it’s still beta testing the OS while a release could come as early as next week, local report citing people familiar with the matter. But we didn’t know the phone would be OEMed by which mobile vendor. Renren once teamed up with HTC to launch a device targeting social networking addicts.

A screenshot of the OS captured online shows that, Renren has integrated a bunch of its own offerings into Android, like Renren Album, Renren Passport, and Renren Radio.

I guess Renren is facing the same problem that Facebook now concerns, namely users’ quick shift from PC to mobile will make them even harder to make money off their offerings as limitations like small screen size and less ad space persist.

Out of the 40.1 million users who logged into the service in April, 39% of which were from some sort of mobile devices. A situation similar to what Facebook is facing as the U.S. SNS empire though has been witnessing a big surge in non-American markets like India or South Asia a lot of these new traffic was routed through mobile phones.